“By my God I can leap over a wall” – Interreligious Horizons in Psalms and Psalms Studies: An International Colloquium in Memory of Erich Zenger (* July 5, 1939 – † April 4, 2010) will be held on July 29-31, 2019 at Dormition Abbey in Jerusalem. This colloquium has been organized by Prof. Dr. Christian Frevel (Department of Catholic Theology, Ruhr-University Bochum) in cooperation with the Dormition Abbey on Mount Zion in Jerusalem and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). There is sure to be much of interest to IQSA members, including a public lecture by eminent Qur’an scholar Angelika Neuwirth entitled “The Emergence of the Qur’anic Proclamation out of Liturgy,” as well as a guided tour by Professor Neuwirth.
About the colloquium: There is hardly any need to justify the fact that Jerusalem is a special place of intra- and interreligious encounter of the so-called Abrahamic religions. The variety of confessions, denominations and religions in such a density at the narrowest of spaces is second to none. Adding the historical dimension, which potentiates the diversity of perspectives, the power of Jerusalem has a unique characteristic regarding the interreligious dialog compared to all other religious melting pots of modernity. The multi-religious lived space is characterized by cohabitation and snippets of shared religious experience. Thus, the historical and actual Jerusalem is a promising place for the academic reflection of mutual contact and religious encounter.
The colloquium will take the Psalms and the Psalter as a case study. Throughout history the Psalms represent an important part of the Christian-Jewish spirituality in practice. Alongside the character of David, the prophet, the Psalms are also appreciated in the Qur’an and the Muslim tradition. There is plenty of shared experience through the history although the Psalms are not part of the explicitly shared tradition. However, academic exchange on the interpretation of the Psalms took place in antiquity as well as in the Middle Ages until modern times. Addressing the present and coming Jerusalem as a lived and believed space, the Psalms are an outstanding study object to explore the prospects and limits of an interreligious dialog starting from the treatment of religious traditions and their reception. Hence, it is time to explore the capability of the Psalms and Psalms studies in the interreligious dialog.
The role of the Psalter with its hymns and laments, its longing for peace, and its hope for the blessing of the world of nations will be explored in this colloquium which brings Jewish, Christian, and Muslim academics in a fruitful exchange. The city of Jerusalem is as well subject matter as the place of venue. “In the Psalms, there sounds an idea […] that the city grants its inhabitants something which is not simply the product of its inhabitants” (Erich Zenger).
The Colloquium deals with four topics:
I. Interreligious horizons in Psalms and Psalms studies
II. Psalms in the Muslim-Christian-Jewish dialog
III. Psalms in Jerusalem – Jerusalem in the Psalms
IV. Contextualizing Psalms in an interfaith dialog
If you wish to participate in this conference please feel free to register by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Text accessed and reproduced with the kind permission of Sarah Ulmann.
© International Qur’anic Studies Association, 2019. All rights reserved.